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April 18, 2011Good morning to all as we creep closer to the Easter holiday, one of my favorite holidays:
First Biscuit: Over the weekend I spoke with MSU defensive coordinator/defensive line coach Chris Wilson. Concerning the defensive tackles, Wilson said on a scale of 1 to 5 that Fletcher Cox's improvement was a 5 and that he really stepped into a leadership role. He also noted Josh Boyd had a solid spring and that Jeff Howie really got into the best shape of his life and he expects a better year from him this year. He said redshirt freshman Kaleb Eulls just got better with every practice and that he could be like Cox or Boyd up front once he gets more reps. On redshirt freshman Curtis Virges, he said he saw flashes of good things from Virges but that Virges needs a great summer and needs to go harder.
Second Biscuit: And with Wilson on the defensive ends, he said Sean Ferguson was "leaps and bounds" better than he was last year and said he should be since he only has a guarantee of 12 games left in his college career. He said he was "pleasantly surprised" by the emergence of junior Trevor Stigers over the last six practice. He also noted junior Shane McCardell has done a great job putting weight on and he is excited about Shane's summer of maintaining his speed with the new weight, which is close to 255 now. And he said sophomore Corvell Harrison-Gay was headed in the right direction and just needs "a million more reps". He also called junior Devin Jones the team's "pinch-hitter" and "flavor of the day" because Jones can play end or the three-technique defensive tackle spot. He said Jones' versatility was very valuable to the team as well as his work ethic and leadership.
Third Biscuit: Over the weekend I spoke with Norcross, Ga., junior receiver Jason Croom, who now holds offers from MSU, Arkansas, Auburn, Illinois, Louisville, USM and Memphis. He said he was playing basketball this summer (high school league and not AAU) and hoped to make it to some camps, too. He said MSU, Auburn, Arkansas, LSU, Georgia and Clemson told him they were coming to see him in spring practice. He said he has no early leaders and did add he talks to MSU assistant coach Angelo Mirando the most.
Fourth Biscuit: Late last week I spoke with Harrison Central (Miss.) junior offensive lineman/defensive tackle Brandon Farmer (6-2 1/2 and 305). He said most schools were recruiting him as an offensive lineman and he has a Louisiana-Lafayette offer with interest from MSU, Auburn, Arkansas, USM and Arkansas State. He said he went to MSU's camp last year and was coming back in hopes of earning an offer. He said MSU is really the school he wants to go to and just hopes he has that opportunity.
Fifth Biscuit: And also over the weekend I spoke with Callaway (Miss.) junior offensive lineman Jocquell Johnson. He said he may play either left tackle or right tackle this year and maybe also some defensive end. He said with work and school, he hasn't had any time to visit any schools this spring but plans to camp at MSU and Ole Miss this summer. He said MSU, Ole Miss and Arkansas were showing him the most interest as well as Nebraska. He said MSU is sticking out to him the most because they show him the most interest and that he feels comfortable with their coaches.
And for the gravy on top: I talked to a few prospects this weekend and a lot of them went to both the MSU and the Ole Miss spring games. One thing that was similiar with them was their response about the spring game atmospheres at both school. They all noted MSU had a much larger crowd and it was louder and added they expected MSU to again have a great game-day atmosphere this fall. Yes, it is the spring but as you've seen over the past week or so in our recruiting stories, that kind of fan support plays a factor in recruiting.